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Sunday, August 30, 2015


by Megan Collins

Five members of the Sistahs on the Reading Edge book club, all of Antioch, from left, Katherine Neal, Georgia Lewis, Lisa Renee Johnson, Allisa Carr and Sandra Jamerson stand together at Johnson’s home in Antioch, Calif., on Monday, Aug. 24, 2015. The five women were among 11 African-American women who were were booted off the Napa Valley Wine Train on Saturday afternoon. Johnson holds a photograph of the group that was taken before boarding the train. The Napa Valley Wine Train issued an apology Tuesday to a book club that includes mostly Black women who said they were booted from a tasting tour because of their race. . . . “The Napa Valley Wine Train was 100 percent wrong in its handling of this issue,” CEO Anthony “Tony” Giaccio said in a statement. “We accept full responsibility for our failures and for the chain of events that led to this regrettable treatment of our guests.” (Jose Carlos Fajardo/Bay Area News Group via AP and AFRO

I hope your laughter
felt like velvet
as it slipped
through your lips.
I hope your mouth
was wide open,
that your teeth
with the sound of it,
your throat a stereo
announcing your joy
to the room.
I hope the sky
was an unbroken blue,
that when you watched it
out the window,
any wounds still stuck
to your bones
shook loose.
I hope the wine
on your tongue,
that when the sun
passed through the bottle,
the chardonnay
shined like brass.
I hope the warmth
that rushed
through your body
made it even easier
to laugh, louder
and higher
until the pitch
of your laughter
every glass.

Megan Collins holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Boston University. She teaches creative writing and literature in Connecticut, and is also an editor of 3Elements Review. Her work has appeared in many journals, including Compose, Linebreak, Rattle, Spillway, and Tinderbox Poetry Journal.